Account of the defeat of the Afghans—of the flight of Prince Kamran—of his taking refuge with Sultan Adam, the Ghicker chief—of his being given up to the King, by whose orders he was blinded. A. H. 960-1.—A. D. 1552-3.

After we had been for some days pent up in the fort, our chiefs began to murmur at our want of exertion; on which the king ordered out some spies to bring intelligence of the situation of the enemy; they returned with information that the Afghan chiefs were enjoying themselves with their respective clans; that they had no fears from his Majesty, and that they had agreed that the Prince Kamran should spend a week with each of the clans (cabyleh) in succession.

On hearing this report, his Majesty, the Prince Akber, and the general Abu al Mualy, perfumed their heads, bathed, and said their Friday prayers, to be prepared for death; and on the following morning, having mounted their horses, they sallied out with all their troops on the Afghans, who although at least amounting to twelve thousand were shortly dispersed, and left an immense number of cattle and sheep in our hands, with some of their women and children; but the Prince Kamran again made his escape, re-entered Hindustan, and sought refuge with Selim (son and successor of the usurper Shyr Shah).

After this victory the king returned to Kabul, made great rejoicings, and bestowed largesses on all the chiefs.

The following year (A. H. 962, A. D. 1554) his Majesty meditated the invasion of Hindustan, and therefore took measures to secure the fortress of Candahar (against the Persians) previous to setting out. About this time the king received letters from Sultan Adam, chief of the Ghickers, stating, “that the Prince Kamran was now in his territory, and that if his Majesty would take the trouble of coming there, he would give him up.”

In consequence of this information the King immediately marched; and having entered the country of Bungish, first seized and put to death a pretended prophet, who was leading mankind astray by teaching them a false religion; after which he proceeded to Dhencut (Deencote of the maps); he then crossed the Nilab (Indus), and, after repeated marches, entered the territory of Sultan Adam. When arrived within ten coss of the residence of this chief, he was met by an ambassador, who requested him to proceed; he therefore, about mid-day reached Pirhala:* his Majesty then ordered tents to be pitched for the meeting between him and the Prince Kamran; but the ambassador returned, and said, “that the Prince insisted upon the king’s coming further to meet him.” On hearing this his Majesty was surprised, and said, “after I have taken the trouble of coming so far, and have prepared accommodation for the interview, it is strange that he should delay the visit;” but to gratify him the tents were sent on another stage. At this place the ambassador again returned, and said, “the Prince was not yet satisfied, and requested the king would still advance;” his Majesty replied, “after evening prayers I will do so.”

About this time the Ghicker chief, Sultan Adam, attended by two others, came and paid their respects. The king said, “Sultan Adam, you have taken a long time to perform this ceremony;” the Chief replied, “I should certainly have done myself the honour of waiting on your Majesty at the Nilab, but I had a guest in my house, whom I could not leave (Kamran);” the king replied, “you have done right, that was of more consequence.”

Sultan Adam again repeated the Prince’s request that the king would move on; his Majesty hesitated for some time; but the Chief said, “the Prince Kamran is my prisoner; you may do as you like.” On this the king advanced to the banks of the river (Rud Ab), and sat there on a bed or couch. After about an hour of the night had passed the Prince arrived, and advanced with great humility; the King, however, received him graciously, and pointed to him to sit down on the bed on his right hand; his Majesty then sat down on the bed also, having the young Prince Akber on his left hand; Sultan Adam, Abu al Mualy, and the other chiefs, were also seated in due order. After some time his Majesty called for a water melon, one-third of which he himself took, and divided it with his brother; another third he gave between Akber and Abu al Mualy, and the remaining third between Terdy Beg and Sultan Adam. After this the Prince Kamran made an apology in the name of several other chiefs for not having waited on the king, but said they would do so next morning. His Majesty replied, “very well, let them do so;” but Sultan Adam said, “as your Majesty has taken the trouble of coming so far, it will be more respectful for them to wait on you immediately:” he, therefore, sent off a messen­ger for them; and the chiefs having been introduced, were graciously received. The king then enquired if the tents were all pitched; and being informed that they were, having first distributed pawn to all the visitors, he mounted his horse and rode to the encampment. Preparations having been made for an entertainment, and public singers assembled, the whole night was passed in jollity and carousing. Early in the morning, the king having said his prayers, lay down to rest; the Prince Kamran retired to his own tent, and did the same. The next night was also passed in festivity.

On the following day the King’s officers demanded of him what he meant to do with the Prince Kamran? he replied, “let us first satisfy the Ghicker chief, after which I will do whatever is deemed proper.”

On the third day a grand entertainment was expressly given to Sultan Adam; he was clothed in a dress of honour; the standard, kettle-drums, and all other insignia of royalty were conferred upon him; after which he was graciously dismissed.

On the next day the business of Myrza Kamran was taken into consideration; and it was resolved in the first place to remove all his servants from him. Then the king ordered five of his own people, viz. Khenjer Beg, Arif Beg, Aly Dust, Sudy Muhammed, and his humble servant Jouher, to attend upon the Prince; and he said to me, “my boy, do you know where you are sent?” I said, “yes; and I know your Majesty’s (wishes):” he replied, “your business is to take care of the interior of the tent; you are desired not to sleep for a moment.” In obedience to the king’s orders, I waited on the Prince about the hour of the second prayer; he asked for a carpet, for the purpose of kneeling on: I brought one, and spread it for him. In the evening he performed his devo­tions inside the tent. After that, he said, “boy,* what is your name?” I replied, “my name is Jouher;” he asked, “do you know the art of champooing (kha­demy)?” I replied, “yes, a little;” I then began to champoo him. He asked, “how long have you been in the king’s service?” I replied, “I have been nine­teen years in his Majesty’s employ;” he said, “you are an old servant;” I replied, “yes:” he then asked me, “if I had ever been in the service of the Prince Askery;” I answered, “no:” he then said, “I have fasted six days, during this holy month of Ramzan; can you be my deputy for the remainder of the month;” I replied, “I can, but your highness will do it yourself; keep up your courage; do not allow melancholy anticipations to take possession of your heart:” he then said, “do you think they will kill me?” I replied, “princes only understand the motives or intentions of princes; but this I am certain of, that no man should commit suicide; and I know that his Majesty is a very compassionate personage.” The night passed in this kind of melancholy discourse.

Early in the morning the king marched towards Hindustan, but before his departure determined that the Prince should be blinded, and gave orders accordingly; but the attendants on the Prince disputed among themselves who was to perform the cruel act. Sultan Aly, the paymaster, ordered Aly Dust to do it; the other replied, “you will not pay a Shah Rukhy (3s. 6d.) to any person with­out the King’s directions; therefore, why should I commit this deed without a personal order from his Majesty? perhaps to-morrow the King may say, ‘why did you put out the eyes of my brother?’ what answer could I give? depend upon it I will not do it by your order.’ Thus they continued to quarrel for some time: at length, I said, “I will go and inform the king.” On which I, with two others, galloped after his Majesty: when we came up with him, Aly Dust said, in the Jagtay Turky language, “no one will perform the business.” The king replied in the same language, abused him, and said, “why don’t you do it yourself?”

After receiving this command, we returned to the Prince, and Ghulam Aly represented to him in a respectful and a condoling manner that he had received positive orders to blind him; the Prince replied, “I would rather you would at once kill me;” Ghulam Aly said, “we dare not exceed our orders:” he then twisted a handkerchief up as a ball for thrusting into the mouth, and he with the Ferash seizing the Prince by the hands, pulled him out of the tent, laid him down and thrust a lancet (Neshter) into his eyes (such was the will of God). This they repeated at least fifty times; but he bore the torture in a manly manner, and did not utter a single groan, except when one of the men who was sitting on his knees pressed him; he then said, “why do you sit upon my knees? what is the use of adding to my pain?” This was all he said, and acted with great courage, till they squeezed some (lemon) juice and salt into the sockets of his eyes; he then could not forbear, and called out, “O Lord, O Lord, my God, whatever sins I may have committed have been amply punished in this world, have compassion on me in the next.”*

After some time he was placed on horseback, and we proceeded to a grove planted by the Emperor Firoz Shah, where, it being very hot, we alighted; and after a short period again mounted, and arrived in the camp, when the Prince was lodged in the tent of Myr Cassim.

The Author of these pages seeing the Prince in such pain and distress, could no longer remain with him; I therefore went to my own tent, and sat down in a very melancholy mood: the king having seen me, sent Jan Muhammed, the librarian, to ask me “if the business I had been employed on was finished, and why I had returned without orders?” the humble servant represented, “that the business I had been sent on was quite completed;” his Majesty then said, “he need not go back, let him get the water ready for me to bathe.”

The next day we marched, and entered the terri­tory of the chief, Piraneh Januah. The aforesaid Piraneh came and paid his respects to the King; but Sultan Adam having requested that the country might be given to him, it was so; his Majesty then entered the country of Raja Sunker, plundered about fifty of the villages, and took a number of captives; but these were released upon paying a certain ransom, by which the army gained considerable wealth.

The king now resolved on going to Cashmire; but the chiefs said, “this is not a proper season for going to such a country as Cashmire;” the king was, however, obstinate, and Abu al Mualy shot one of the refractory Moghul chiefs with an arrow, and ordered the others to march; on which several of the nobles seeing the determination of his Majesty, went and complained to Sultan Adam, who immediately came to the king, and falling at his feet, requested him to forgo his intention, assuring him that Islam Khan Sur* was advancing into the Punjab, and that the Afghans, who had for some time abandoned the fort of Rhotas and crossed the Behut river, had returned and again taken possession of that district; he, therefore, advised his Majesty to return for the present to Kabul and Candahar, and having there recruited his army, he might next year come back and enter Hindustan or Cashmire; but in the mean time to place the river Sind between him and his enemies, and trust to Providence for the furtherance of his wishes.